Best in the World: Bloggers Explain Why the TCS New York City Marathon Is Your Ultimate Bucket-List Race
Standing with thousands of runners at the start line of my first TCS New York City Marathon (2016), was a sensory overload. There was excitement mixed with anticipation, while another part of me was just trying to appreciate the moment.
Listening to Peter Ciaccia’s (then race director of the TCS New York City Marathon) welcoming speech, his passion for the marathon was palpable. As we stood there, he described what it was like to run through the five boroughs, highlighting the crowds that make this the world’s greatest block party. When we set off, we realized that everything he said was true!
The start of the TCS New York City Marathon is like a scene out of a movie, with Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York” playing as you run across the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge. In 2016, I could see the NYFD Fire Boat on the left, with water cannons blasting water high into the air, coupled with the famous NYC skyline, with the backdrop of a blue sky and sun shining.
The Buzz Is True
Why should you run the TCS New York City Marathon? Where does one start when trying to answer this as there’s so many reasons. Well, if you get into the race, you’ll run through the streets of one of the most amazing cities in the world. The best part—it’ll be full of people cheering for you and screaming your name. These spectators will give you all the energy needed to complete those challenging 26.2 miles.
The buzz you hear about the TCS New York City Marathon is true. The course is challenging, yes, but it is also amazing. Running across bridges, through the five boroughs, and finishing in Central Park makes it one of the most scenic and beautiful courses I have run. I don’t know why, but the TCS New York City Marathon made me feel powerful and fast on marathon day. If you are a runner, you’ll definitely want to experience it for yourself.
It Will Invigorate You
I’ve run 12 marathons, but there is no hesitation in my answer when anyone asks me to name my favorite: New York City.
The crowds are unlike any other, even the other Abbott World Marathon Major events, and if you have your name printed on your shirt, they feel like they are there, just for you!
If you want a moment of peace, plug in your headphones because NYC crowds are loud throughout. Personally, I don’t run New York for a personal best, rather I run to have the time of my life. It is a 26.2-mile party, perfect for a first-time marathoner to earn their first medal or a seasoned pro to remind them of why they run. It will also invigorate anyone who has ever said ‘never again’ after crossing that finish line.
The Crowds! Enter the Drawing to Experience Those Crowds
Participants in the TCS New York City Marathon are treated to a unique way to experience the five boroughs that make up New York City. Each borough has its own individual charm and character and that includes the spectators! From the boisterous cheers of Brooklynites on Fourth Avenue, through the wall of sound under the Queensboro Bridge and, finally, the roar of the crowds in Central Park, you'll ride an amazing wave of support from beginning to end.
There are many reasons why the TCS New York City Marathon is the best in the world; the iconic landmarks, the buzz throughout the city, and the challenging course, but it’ll likely be the crowds you remember most.
A Race Like No Other
I’ve run marathons across the U.S., and I can tell you without a doubt that the TCS New York City Marathon is a race like no other. The energy, the emotions, the sites, the crowd, the bridges, the sheer number of runners puts the race in a class all by itself.
Like no other sporting event, this race changes the whole city and, as a runner, you get to see and experience that firsthand.
New Yorkers spend 364 days a year not looking at anyone on the street, but on this one day, they look complete strangers in the eye and cheer as loud as they can. It’s an experience you can only have running the TCS New York City Marathon.
For Some, It’s a Once-in-a-Lifetime Experience
I've run many important marathons around the world, all with beautiful courses and big crowds. However, I return to run the TCS New York City Marathon every year as it is the best. It’s the only race where the emotions and the amazing support from spectators make you forget about fatigue during the race.
It feels as if the whole city is sharing your journey and supporting you in every boroughs, from Staten Island to Central Park. This is an experience everyone should enjoy at least once in their lifetime. You fall in love with the city and all its people.
The Greatest Way to See the City
The TCS NYC Marathon course is one big tourist attraction. Even if you’ve been to New York City before, I can guarantee you will see more of the city running 26.2 miles than on an open-top bus tour.
Running through all five boroughs means you see and experience everything from the brownstones of Brooklyn to the street parties in Harlem, and there is nothing more spectacular than the marathon finish line in Central Park. You really get to know the city, its people, and its sights.
The Diversity of the City
As cliche as it may sound, there is nothing better than running the TCS New York City Marathon in the greatest city in the world: New York. I’m always thankful for the diversity of the city and everything that the different neighborhoods have to offer, but never am I more aware of it—and delighted by it—than when I run the marathon.
From the gospel choirs in Brooklyn, to my hometown crew in Harlem (Harlem Run), the marathon allows me to appreciate the diversity of the city—all united and proud for this one day!
Part of History
A lot of people say you should run the TCS New York City Marathon because you'll feel like a superstar—because where else will millions of people line the streets to scream your name?
But I'm actually the opposite. I love running the New York City Marathon because I love feeling like I'm just another runner in the thick of it.
It's so cool and humbling to realize you are among a group of 50,000 runners, all heading for the same finish line. A group that spent hot summer days waking up early, running late, logging miles all over the world, all with the same course, the same goal in mind.
When I see footage of the runners setting out over the Verrazzano Bridge, I'm not thinking, ‘Where am I in that crowd?!’ I'm thinking, ‘Wow. That's an amazing group to be a part of.’ And I feel so lucky. You should try to experience it for yourself.
New York City: The Pulse of the World
There are so many superlatives used to describe New York City, the city that never sleeps. New York City is a melting pot of different nationalities, races, cultures, and mentalities.
New York residents are tolerant and open-minded. The city exudes such a positive energy. It can be inviting and hectic, yet relaxing, too.
Technology, fashion, design, food, architecture intersect here. When something is trendy, New York is often the origin of the movement. The city reflects the pulse of the times.
And it is this atmosphere that spreads from the first to the last mile of the TCS New York City Marathon. Running through New York City's five boroughs, seeing the people who cheerfully keep their spirits up, make the New York City Marathon one of the most beautiful, if not perhaps the most beautiful marathon in the world.
An Epic Start
As an international runner and someone who comes comes from a rural part of Ireland—the TCS New York City Marathon is—by far—the best marathon in the world! The crowd, with more than 1 million spectators, really make it special, along with the amazing volunteers out on course.
When you add in more than 50,000 running buddies—it will be one of the best days of your running life. Starting on the Verrazzano Bridge on race day is epic. As you wait at the start line, you get to see the elite athletes take off and it really makes you feel part of the whole experience.
Experience it for yourself. Apply for a spot in the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon. The application is open from January 14 through February 14, 2019.